Claiming Social Security at 62? Maybe you should reconsider | Personal Finance

Data source: Social Security. Table by author.

If you live on a steady income, every little bit helps. Both have a greater everyday advantage and getting more dollars with that inflation adjustment by waiting after 62 can make the difference between staying comfortable and having to make tough choices.

New. 5: Your surviving spouse may thank you

When a member of a married couple dies, the surviving spouse can often receive the higher of the couple’s two Social Security benefits. While the surviving spouse may be able to live on less than the two can live on as a married couple, the loss of income due to withdrawal of benefits can still be financially painful.

In addition to the direct loss of money, a widow or widower quickly loses the opportunity to file a joint tax return. That means any remaining earnings may be exposed to higher taxes, which can make a difficult situation even more difficult.

Therefore, consider who you may leave behind once you graduate and what your death will mean for their financial well-being before deciding when to collect your Social Security benefits. A little wait can make an incredible difference to someone you love.

Waiting might be worth it

Social Security is designed to play a role in – but not be the only source of funding for – your retirement. When considering whether 62 is the right age for you to claim benefits, you need to look at your overall financial picture before committing. You might find that waiting a little bit may end up being a better choice.

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